Taking care of an Australian Shepherd requires a lot of patience and of course, a lot of energy. These dogs are very agile and active and they always love to work, exercise and do something to make their day busy.
Same like German Shepherd this breed of dog is not the same as the others who prefer to just sleep all day or laze around. This dog always looks for something that they can do. Australian Shepherds became popular because of their job. They become guides for blind people and they also become therapy dogs.
There are instances when they even work as search and rescue dogs. Basically, this dog can also herd livestock.
Because of its active lifestyle, this dog needs a nutritious diet so they can stay healthy and sustain their energy. If you are planning to get an Australian Shepherd, you need to know their nutritional needs and the best dog foods to feed them.
- Australian Shepherd’s Calorie Intake
- Nutrients that Australian Shepherd Needs
- Important Considerations on Dog Food for Australian Shepherd
- Top 5 Best Dog Food for Australian Shepherds
Australian Shepherd’s Calorie Intake
Before we proceed with the best dog foods for Australian Shepherds, the first thing that you need to know is the required calorie intake of this dog. You need to make sure that they get the right calorie intake so they won’t be malnourish or overweight.
For the male dogs, they usually grow up to 20 to 23 inches and weigh around 50 to 65 pounds. For female dogs, they grow up to 18 to 21 inches and weigh around 30 to 45 pounds. The calorie intake of your dog will depend on several factors:
- Level of activity
- History of being neutered
For an adult Australian Shepherd weighing around 50 pounds, the recommended calorie intake per day is 1353 calories. For the pups and young dogs, they would need more calories because they are still growing.
You should also check the activity level of your dog. If your dog lies around all day with less exercise, you should give them fewer calories.
Nutrients that Australian Shepherd Needs
As the owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that the needs of your dog are provided. You need to make sure that they get all the nutrients that they need to live healthy and active.
If you don’t have any idea about the vitamins and minerals that you need to check when looking for dog foods, we will give you some ideas on the nutrients that you need to check on the dog foods.
- Protein– This is the most important nutrient that every dog needs. Even if you don’t have an Australian Shepherd, any breed of dog requires a good amount of protein and they should come from real meat like beef, fish, lamb, and chicken. For protein, the suggested amount would be 22 percent for the puppies to support their growth and 18 percent for adult dogs. It is fine to exceed this amount and premium dog foods contain a high percentage of protein.
- DHA– This is very important for the brain development of your dogs. If you are getting a puppy, you need to look for dog foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Healthy Fats– Fat is a very important source of energy for your dogs and their diet should have at least 8 percent for puppies and about 5 percent for adults.
- Carbohydrates– Dogs don’t need a lot of carbohydrates, but their body needs it to make their blood sugar steady. If you have an Australian Shepherd, you can look for dog foods that contain carbohydrates.
There are also things that you have to avoid when looking for dog foods.
- Artificial Preservatives– Never buy dog foods that contain artificial preservatives. Your Australian Shepherd will be eating the dog food for a long time and it is not good for their health to ingest artificial preservatives. It would have a lot of health complications.
- Excessive Nutrients– There is a recommended amount of nutrients needed by Australian Shepherds. For example, even if they need protein, you cannot give them too much. You need to balance the nutrients in their body.
- Adding other supplements to the dog food– The dog food itself is already complete. It has all the nutrients that your dog needs so you don’t have to add anything else on their diet.
Important Considerations on Dog Food for Australian Shepherd
There are no one-size fits all when it comes to dog foods. There are so many things that you need to check before you decide to feed something to your Australian Shepherd.
- Calorie Intake– We already mentioned before that calorie intake can be affected by several factors. The breed of your dog will also dictate the calorie intake. This is the reason why you have to check your vet for the recommended amount of calories for your dogs.
- Type of dog food– There are dry and wet dog foods that you can find in the market today. Dry dog foods usually contain more nutrients, but wet dog foods provide a better taste for your dogs.
- Allergies– When choosing a dog food, you need to know if your dogs have allergies on certain ingredients. Usually, these dogs are allergic to certain grains. You will have to monitor your dogs when they are eating.
- Health conditions – Australian Shepherds might experience a few health conditions and the dog food that you will buy can be related to this.
Top 5 Best Dog Food for Australian Shepherds
If you don’t have any idea what to give them or you don’t know any dog food brands to try, we will give you a list of dog foods that you can check.
1. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry Dog Food
Australian Shepherds are very active and they exercise a lot, but despite this fact, they still gain weight easily. It is the reason why you cannot overfeed them or exceed the required calories daily because they easily gain weight.
You need to look for a dog food that can help support their energy needs while helping them maintain their weight. The Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry Dog Food contains all the nutrients that your dog needs and it can provide the energy while helping them maintain their weight.
This is made with high-quality ingredients with deboned chicken as its primary source of protein. Like what is mentioned before, Australian Shepherds need a balanced diet and this dog food contains whole grains, veggies, and fruits.
It is free from any artificial preservatives and it does contain any ingredients that can cause allergies to your dogs. If you want a complete meal for your Aussies, this is your best option.
2. Canidae Life Stages Dog Food
This product is one of the best in the market simply because it caters to all the life stages of your Australian Shepherd. It means that you can feed this to puppies and young dogs, adult Aussies and also to Senior Australian Shepherds.
It contains high-quality ingredients that would provide complete nutrition for your Aussies. The main ingredients include Chicken, Turkey and Lamb meal, white and brown rice, peas, oatmeal, Rice Bran and more.
It contains 24 percent protein, which is decent enough to provide the energy needed by your Aussies to do their daily activities. It has around 14 percent fat which will also provide extra energy for your Aussies.
It only contains 4 percent fiber. As you all know, active dogs need healthy fats and protein to support their energetic lifestyle, but it has to be balanced. The 4 percent fiber comes from the grains added on this dog food.
You don’t need to be alarmed because adding grains is not a bad idea. It is made to provide a balanced diet for your Australian Shepherds.
3. American Journey Dry Dog Food
What makes it one of the most popular choices when it comes to dog foods for Australian Shepherds? It is one of the dog foods that offer complete nutrition and also one of the most affordable in the market right now.
You don’t need to buy the most expensive dog foods for your Australian Shepherd. We all believe that expensive dog foods contain the best ingredients, but there are times when even the cheaper alternatives provide the same nutritional value.
It is more affordable because the ingredients are limited. The goal of this dog food is to not trigger any allergies to your Australian Shepherds. Aussies may be prone to allergies so you need to be very careful on the food that you give to them.
American Journey Dry Dog Food provides the right amount of fat and protein for your Aussies to support their high energy needs.
4. Nutro Ultra Adult Dog Food
This dog food is for your senior Australian Shepherds. It is a wet dog food that can provide the nutrients that your senior dogs need for their health. What makes it extra special?
It is very delicious food for dogs and they love it because it is digestible and it has high-quality ingredients. This is also the perfect dog food for seniors because it is not only palatable, but it can also help overweight dogs to shed some pounds.
If you think that your Aussies are a bit overweight, you should try and give this wet dog food to them. It has the right nutrients and they would be full without getting fat.
It contains chicken meat, lamb, salmon, tomatoes, carrots, cranberries and more. These are all fresh ingredients and it contains real meat chunks so your senior dogs will surely love it.
If you have an old Aussie, this is the best dog food that you can give them.
5. Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Dog Food
Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Dog Food is one of the top picks in this list. It is definitely one of the best because it is a meat-based dry dog food that is made specifically for Australian Shepherds. It contains a lot of protein and fat that can provide your dog with the energy that it needs for its daily activities.
This dog food does not contain any corn, wheat and say and they come in small bites that can be digested easily by young Aussies. If you have pups or you have a young Aussie in your house, this is the best dog food that you can give them.
It also contains flaxseeds, which is very important to make sure that your puppy’s coat will stay soft and healthy. It also has DHA for the development of the eye and brain of your dogs.
The main ingredients include the following:
- Deboned chicken
- Chicken Meal
- Ground barley
- Salmon Meal
This dog food contains 29% protein, which is definitely higher compared with other brands mentioned on this list. It also contains 18% fat to provide more energy for your dogs. It also contains 4.5% fiber, which is just enough to provide a balanced diet.
Taking care of an Australian Shepherd is not easy. To be honest, it is very complicated and you need the knowledge and experience to make sure that they can live healthily. These dogs are very demanding, especially when it comes to exercise.
They have to be brought outside for a walk multiple times a day because if you just let them stay inside your house lazing around, they will become fat easily. Even if you control their diet, not doing anything will surely cause them to gain weight.
If you know the best foods that you can give them, it will be easier for you to provide the nutrients that they need to grow healthy. The dog foods mentioned here are made for all life stages of your Australian Shepherd.
It doesn’t matter if you have a young or old dog because there will always be a specific dog food that would fit their needs. Be very meticulous with the food that you are giving them if you want to them to grow healthy and strong.